Honda to boost car output in China to over 1mil vehicles image

Honda Motor Co (7267.T) said on Monday it will build a third production line in China, boosting the Japanese automaker’s output capacity in China to over 1 million vehicles from the current 770,000.

Construction of the third line which will start at the end of 2012 is expected to commence production in 2014 with capacity to produce 120,000 units per year.

In addition to capacity expansion, the company will further localize its R&D capabilities in China, the world’s largest automobile market, to further strengthen its operation to deliver new products which focus on Chinese customers, with speed, affordability and low CO2 emissions.

Honda Motor earlier this month said it will launch 10 new car models in China between now and 2015 and expects that by 2015 its annual China sales will be double those recorded in 2011.

Honda largely missed the county’s recent booming demand for cheap cars in inland cities and for luxury vehicles with engines small enough to avoid high taxes.